New project with Nauvoo Glassworks

matching the hot glass colors to my moretti
heating the color

'gathering' the clear glass

blowing a bubble to get it started

enlarging the form

heating the end so we can create a hole

blowing out a hole on the bottom of the piece

enlarging the hole and opening up the vessel

'blocking' the vessel with wood paddles to thicken the walls

spinning the vessel into disc form

removing disc from the furnace

almost done!

I've had a project in mind for awhile. A large sculpture using glass. This past weekend was devoted to getting this project off the ground. My mom and Lucky (my pup) spent the past few days camping with me in Nauvoo, Illinois while I worked across the street with Jim Topic of Nauvoo Glassworks.

Finding a glassblower in the Midwest is not an easy thing. The glass movement is primarily based in the Northwest for many good reasons. Foremost being the weather. Nobody wants to stand in front of a blazing hot furnace and play with molten glass in 90 degree plus humidity weather. After finding a select few glass blowers in surrounding states the next matter was finding one who would take on such a small and specific project. I had planned to be involved but I hadn't planned to be nearly as involved as I was working with Jim!

While at RISD I had considered majoring in glassblowing. I had tried my hand at it before and had been lampworking for almost 4 summers at that point. In order to make my decision I took a wintersession of glassblowing. After witnessing a major nasty accident, the trials and tribulations of hauling glass pieces to shows, and contemplating the start up costs alone I made the decision to become a jeweler. After this weekend I am doubly glad!

There's something mesmerizing about the flow of molten glass. The magic of the material as it begins to firm up into a shape you've coaxed out of it. Vivid colors, immediate textures, light playing in the transparency. Luckily I have the ability to still witness these qualities on a small scale in front of my torch.


sweet sharp ♥s squarings

I woke up to a fantastic email this morning - New York based shopping blog, Sweet Sharp, is featuring fuzzishü's Squaring - Pearl in their geometric jewelry post 'Of circles and squares'.


What's in a name?

Earlier this week I launched a quest on Etsy. I have a series of work that needed a name. They are beautiful little fine silver pendants on 14k gold filled chains. The contrast, the cut-out designs, the curly edges. Many little elements coming together to create a harmonious whole. But they were without a name. 24 hours after turning to my fellow Etsy-ians I have well over 30 suggestions. I was looking for a one-word name to go with my other series (retro, a go go, etc.)

The finalists were :









And the winner is....Silhouette! You can see the winner's post about the contest here.

fuzzishü spotting! Creston, Iowa

There's a fantastic article written about my project to stay in Corning in the Creston News Advertiser. Please check it out!

Artist seeks permanent home in Corning
By TYLER ELLYSON - CNA staff reporter

It was love at first sight for Rachel Sims, who has been an artist-in-residence at the Corning Center for the Fine Arts since July 2007. She lives and creates her handmade jewelry in Corning, and would love for it to stay that way.

There’s just one problem.

The young artist needs to sell close to $70,000 of jewelry before the end of February.

Go to the full article.


fuzzishü ♥s etsy

I've taken the plunge and started posting my jewelry on Etsy for the grass roots project mentioned in the last post (link). Etsy is a fantastic site featuring a wide variety of handmade goods by artists around the world. It is also a wonderfully open community. Another Etsy member interviewed me for her blog for the 'Interesting or Not so Interesting' section. Please go here and check it out. What can I say? I live my life like a Chinese proverb/curse - 'May you live in interesting times'. :P


fuzzishü spotting! Council Bluffs, Iowa

Council Bluffs did a fantastic article on both fuzzishü and the Corning Center for the Fine Arts.

Our Neighbors: Artist Sims right at home in Corning
by Emily Kesten, Staff Writer

...Linda Shearer, the center's board president, would like to keep Sims in Corning. "If you know of any projects for her, let us know," she said.

Artists in residence who open studios in Adams County following completion of their residency receive a reimbursement on their program rent. But more importantly, artists who stay can develop and sustain a creative culture in rural Iowa.

The young artist hopes to raise enough money from jewelry sales by the end of February to buy an 110-year-old building on Davis Avenue, Corning's main street.

"I saw it on my first day in Corning, and it was just like - boom! That's it!" said Sims.

After spending two and a half years in Switzerland, Sims took a chance on Corning, a small town she had never seen with "a population smaller than my high school." The chance has turned into a life decision.

The slower pace of life, close-knit community, its lively downtown and the can-do spirit appeal to her.

Check it out the full article here.